Thursday, March 14, 2019

Random Mercury

Mercury is the least defined of the inner planets in pulp and early sci-fi. Beyond it being tidally locked  (which we've since learned it actually isn't), Mercury had no fixed characteristics, other than being generally more inhospitable than the other planets I've already dealt with: wet Venus or desert Mars. A lot of stories use Mercury for "Man Against Nature" stories, either for survivors of some sort of disaster or rescuers of survivors. But hey, when you've got your own Mercury, you can do what you want with it!Let's randomize:

Problems with Getting There?
1 None
2 Solar Storms (heat, radiation)
3 Magnetic Anomalies

Where’s the Action for Earth Folk?
1 Day Side
2 Twilight Belt
3 Night Side
4 The whole planet

Day Side Life?
1 None
2 Silicon-based lifeforms
3 Insect/Arthopods
4 Energy/Plasma beings
5 Whoever they are, they live underground
6 Alien robots/cyborgs

Earthlings on Day Side?
1-2 Not if they can help it. It’s got lethal heat and radiation with special gear.
3-4 Crazy prospectors in protective domes
5-6 Maverick archeologists after ancient artifacts
7-8 Fearless scientists studying the Sun (or Vulcan!)
9-10 Just robots

The Twilight Belt Terrain:
1 Badlands
2 Mountains, canyons and a cave network
3 Weird, crystalline forest
4 Torrid jungle, wracked by storms

Twilight Belt Life?
1 Hairy humanoid primitives
2 reptilian monsters
3 Plant-like
4 the same sort of beings as Day Side

Earthlings in the Twilight Belt?
1 Criminals hiding out
2 A small, struggling colony
3 Castaways
4 A scientific expedition

Night Side Terrain:
1 Cold, rocky desert
2 Odd crystal formations
3 Ruined Cities (and roll again)
4 Ice

Night Side Life?
1 None
2 Crystalline beings with telepathy
3 Incorporeal ergovores
4 Androids left by ancient inhabitants
5 Viscous, slime-like colonial intelligence
6 Creatures strangely resembling supernatural terrors of Earth legend

Earthlings on the Night Side?
1-2 Not if they can help it. It’s cold, dark, and unexplored.
3-4 Wanted men
5-6 Maverick archaeologists after ancient artifacts
7-8 Survivors from a long-lost rocket crash
9-10 Exploratory robots

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